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Lotus staff got free hot drinks vending machines back in August, was a very welcome move and much appreciated from the people who work there. Sometimes the little things can make a big difference 👍

Having spoken to a few of the long time Lotus guys still at Hethal i can confirm my LOVE for Lotus is back on the straight and narrow, Jaguars/McLarens are not for me!  I just need to have more p

Selling 6 cars instead of 5 in China would be a 20% increase. There really is nothing to celebrate at this moment in time beyond Lotus's survival but hopefully it will start to make some kind of sense

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Well I may as well put my head above the parapet. I have always found the slab-sided Renault engined Europa and the 1970s Elite to be visually challenging.

In comparison I find the redesigned Twin Cam Europa and Eclat/Excel to have much nicer proportions.

Time to duck back down again...?

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I loved the 70's elite that's why it was the 1st lotus i bought.

Agree about the Renault Europa  and would then add the 2007/2008 Europa, seen a few when they were launched, never clicked with me. - sorry to those who have one, they are probably great to drive.

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I agree with this, don't like the new Europa... doesn't quite look like all the body parts were supposed to go together

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10 minutes ago, TdM said:

don't like the new Europa... 

Re the ‘new’ Europa, although it ended up as a Lotus, didn’t it start out life as a Proton?

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I have to say the Europa S and the Porsche Cayman have visual similarities. When going out on runs with MLOC I have wondered how did that get in our convoy until it clicked. It's a Lotus and I still like how it looks.

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The late Europa is definitely one of the red-headed step children of the marque (no offence to red-heads or stepchildren), relegated to ignominy in some eyes and even doing duty as a Dodge EV mule. I might have to also nominate the Seven S4 which probably suffered in having one of the toughest acts to follow.

Hard to get too excited over the FEs, mainly since we can't have them in the US, but also that none seem to be particularly earth-shaking as a FE as, say, the 4 cyl Esprit swan song: the Sport 300, which continues to be a rare icon on it's own.

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4 hours ago, Bravo73 said:

Re the ‘new’ Europa, although it ended up as a Lotus, didn’t it start out life as a Proton?

Wasn't it just a rebodied VX220?  Contrary to what people think the VX and Elise were not the same chassis I believe with the VX being slightly longer/wider than the Elise making it ideal for the Europa's GT purpose.

Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!    

The first guy to ride a bull for fun, was a true hero. The second man to follow him was truly nuts!   

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Yep, Europa (2000s era) was a project for Proton - an Asia only car. Something changed, I don't know the specifics but Lotus were instructed to stick a yellow and green badge on it and get it in the showrooms of Europe. 

I remember Bell and Colvill sales director basically refusing to sell it. Unless a customer walked in and insisted, he wasn't gonna put you in it.

Justin 

 

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On 08/02/2021 at 20:31, C8RKH said:

Wasn't it just a rebodied VX220?  Contrary to what people think the VX and Elise were not the same chassis I believe with the VX being slightly longer/wider than the Elise making it ideal for the Europa's GT purpose.

Are you sure about that Andy? I was told by the Vauxhall exec responsible for the VX220, that they took the S1 Elise chassis and the only redesign was to have lower sills for slightly easier entry. Lotus subsequently used the exact same modified chassis in the S2 Elise. Engine mounts etc are obviously different but it’s the same in all other respects. 
The VX body panels make the car look larger but it’s the same chassis with several interchangeable parts. 

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Not sure at all @Spinney, it may just be folklore or fake news that I have picked up on! Happy to be corrected.

 

Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!    

The first guy to ride a bull for fun, was a true hero. The second man to follow him was truly nuts!   

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The same Vauxhall fella told me that in hindsight he slipped up by not putting a clause in their contract with Lotus preventing them using the same modified chassis, which GM had paid to redesign.

They were taken by surprise when Lotus announced the face lifted S2 Elise using ‘their’ modded chassis. He said they had expected the S1 to continue for a few more years before being replaced. 😁

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I think that is right @Spinney. I recall no Elise being available to dealers in late 2000 between S1 and S2 - and the strong rumour at the time was GM had gone legal against Lotus for use of the modified S1 VX chassis for S2 Elise. Production was perhaps halted for a while. 

Reminiscent of Essex Esprit Turbo and S3 version, in getting someone else to pay for your facelift car. 

Justin 

 

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It wasn't just paying for the development, I understand that Vauxhall also paid for the building of a new building & assembly line which was subsequently handed over to Lotus.

Correct that the VX was built on a modified S1 chassis which was also subsequently used for the S2

The type116, whilst being a bit of a costly PR exercise for Vauxhall (not helped by that awful Gryf Recce-Jones initial avert), became a success for Lotus in more ways than 1. Something that they will never admit in public!

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I think it was Griffin Rhys-Jones who did the VX220 adverts.

Justin

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6 hours ago, PaulCP said:

It wasn't just paying for the development, I understand that Vauxhall also paid for the building of a new building & assembly line which was subsequently handed over to Lotus.

Correct that the VX was built on a modified S1 chassis which was also subsequently used for the S2

The type116, whilst being a bit of a costly PR exercise for Vauxhall (not helped by that awful Gryf Recce-Jones initial avert), became a success for Lotus in more ways than 1. Something that they will never admit in public!

Yep that’s right, they did, including improving quality control using modern production line techniques.

GM actually put quite a lot of money into Lotus to ensure the VX220 production met their standards. Quite ironic really when you look at the sort of shitboxes they were producing themselves at that time! 😂

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On 08/02/2021 at 22:45, jep said:

Yep, Europa (2000s era) was a project for Proton - an Asia only car. Something changed, I don't know the specifics but Lotus were instructed to stick a yellow and green badge on it and get it in the showrooms of Europe. 

I remember Bell and Colvill sales director basically refusing to sell it. Unless a customer walked in and insisted, he wasn't gonna put you in it.

Justin 

 

Genuinely curious. What was so bad about it, if I may ask? Was the refusal to sell them based purely on esthetics or rather on dynamic shortfalls? I remember chatting to a technician in a Lotus dealer saying that the GM powerplant (the turbo, basically) didn´t suit the car. Are they good cars otherwise?

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They're very small, not really the GT car they were intended to be. 

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88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

For forum issues, please contact the Moderators. I will aim to respond to emails/PM's Mon-Fri 9-6 GMT. 

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The Europa was in the showrooms at the time I was ordering my Elise SC and I have to admit that having seen it, I was quite tempted. I’ve always been rather partial to a fastback design!

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@Arregueti I was only passing on a memory, I am no expert on Europa. The sales director at B&C at the time was a passionate Lotus man (still is but has moved even closer to the marque). I suspect (but do not know) that the mood at Lotus about the new Europa was that it had been forced upon them. 

The Elise was so brilliant, as was Exige, the Europa was not a further step up. It was at best a sideways slide and as Bibs says, not a brilliant GT car.

I am sure there is nothing 'wrong' with Europa as a fun sports car. But it cannot be regarded as a legendary Lotus, as it is neither as nimble as Elise or as comprehensive as Evora. 

I must be clear, I am not dishing Europa - just that at the time,  it was not the event perhaps the salesmen wanted. Or the factory.

Justin

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There's a topic here from over 15 years ago!! 

 

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88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

For forum issues, please contact the Moderators. I will aim to respond to emails/PM's Mon-Fri 9-6 GMT. 

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4 minutes ago, Arregueti said:

 

@jep

Oh, I see who you are talking about. 🙂

Yes, I understand a Lotus GT has being a difficult sale for quite some time now, and it is even harder when you have to compete with an icon soft-top rival at home, and the house itself... The noughties years' (GM/Proton) look like very troubled waters from where we stand now.

Just as @Spinney, I do like a fastback (and the underdog, generally). I did consider them after seeing one being showcased by Lotus at Spa in one of the Lotus Cup races back in 2008, but then the Evora was released...  ...and here we are... Worth having Lotus trying the GT path, if you ask me.

Let's see what type 131 brings next.

 

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I have a weak spot for Europa - love the fast-back design. Brown leather option with gunmetal coachwork, add in a turbo (do love a turbo, esp if it has a bit of lag) and I would be happy. But would it be as good and versatile as Evora? As good on a B road as Elise? I doubt it. I certainly would not object to finding out first hand.

And probably depreciation-free these days.

Justin

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